First Race back – New Zealand Winter Games
Coronet Peak, New Zealand The performance of the day goes out to Mini Zampa. Congrats to Adam Zampa for taking the victory, but his little brother that we like to call Mini Zampa – Andreas is his first name – is a nasty GS skier. He absolutely rips when it’s steep. I always watch him – weather training or racing – because he lays it over so hard. He had just under 30 points before yesterday, but it’s no surprise to see him move up and score an 11 point race. It’s so fun to see young dudes make big moves like that, good on ya Mini Zamapa.
Today was a solid day for my first day back in the starting gate. I didn’t ski well and finished 8th, 8 tenths behind Adam Zampa to score a 13 point race. I definitely could have found at least 8 tenths up there, which is actually a nice feeling. Yeah I still have a lot of things to work on to be ready for the season, but I’ve come a long way from excruciating pain and surgery just over 6th month ago.
My fitness is nearly at 100 percent and my skiing in the last two weeks has changed dramatically. There is nothing like an impending competition to force you to make changes and dial in your set up and game. Five day ago I switched to an older pair of head boots that is a bit softer and it is definitely the right direction for my skiing.
Today was a great day to score as everyone was pretty tight. Special thanks to Tim Jitloff for losing a ski on the second run because he has been ripping in training and races and very likely would have blow this race out. Thomas Biesemeyer and Kieffer Christianson also blew out second run after putting together solid performances.
The snow was quite soft so they did a lot of salting first run to make it relatively good, but second run was unbelievably bumpy. The second run was the first run just moved over about a panel on a few gates with extremely flat light – without too much dye – so you couldn’t see all the holes. I stuffed my foot into a really big one second run. One of the coaches that saw it was worried about my back when I hit it so hard, but I’m totally fine. My back feels completely money and I don’t even think about it any more other than all the core I do daily to keep it feeling strong and powerful.
It’s great to get back in the gate and I certainly still have quite a bit to work on, but I’m making some great progress and fired up about my next camp in Chile.
I have a couple more days down here, but the weather is very warm with a storm rolling in so we’ll see how much more time on snow we get.
Cheers from Queenstown,